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Scott Clements’ 2023 Wrap-Up

The saying goes ‘a week is a long time in politics’, well in 2023 you could be forgiven for thinking the saying was instead meant for the construction and development industry.  We all started the year with a bang, strong stimulus for the industry still running through, a great desire and drive to move things for and a (generally) positive outlook.  Of course, we knew the cloud of inflation and construction cost escalation was hanging over us, but I don’t think many predicted it would become a full-blown natural disaster within a few months.

More recently key changes, or drivers for our industry that should have happened at least 12 months ago, all quickly came into effect within weeks of each other.  A change of tact with the Queensland State Government, including finally coming to their senses in announcing an independent authority to deliver Olympic infrastructure, a federal government realising that spending more actually worsens inflation, and hence pulling back on infrastructure spend (although there is obviously debate on what should and should not have been altered) and at the same time making important changes to our immigration policy, with better balance towards the key labour shortages a needed improvement (although the …. ahem …. ‘inexplicable’ decision not to include much need tradies and machinery operators in the fast-track process is a clear weakness in the new policy).

At Inertia we have ridden (and perhaps in many ways resembled) the highs and lows of the industry in 2023.  2023 has most certainly been a rollercoaster.  We have made great leaps in structure and systems in the business but at the same time battled the same constraints as much of the industry in resource availability and the start/stop nature of building projects in particular.  We have continued to work on more and more interesting projects with wonderful clients who have a great passion for their work and see the value in our service.

Our projects range from beachside sub-divisions to riverside commercial buildings, through to various residential projects including for social, retirement, aged care, high end apartments as well as some of the biggest single houses in Queensland.  We are working on all manner of industrial projects from ‘man sheds’ to light industrial up to 20,000 sqm plus sheds, whilst also taking on commercial and retail fitouts, shopping centre extensions and new ‘big box’ centres.  We continue to do a number of state and private education projects, from masterplans to whole schools to bespoke extensions.  We have further expanded into institutional and infrastructure projects including health, hospitals, airport facilities and road infrastructure.  We could not be happier (or prouder) with the types of projects, clients and consultant teams we get to work on, with and for!

At the same time, we’ve reflected on our lessons learned from what has been a challenging (and ever-changing year).  Primarily 2023 has reinforced that having a strong, connected and dedicated team and leadership group is more important than ever.  The commitment and support of my fellow Inertians has been inspiring (and critical) in these ever-changing times.  We have also at times found it difficult to maintain the balance between one of our business’ greatest strengths, our agility, and our increased systems that provide control as we grow.  Lastly, our other key lesson from the year is to ensure continued and increased focus on moving towards our vision, eliminating distractions that won’t allow us to become the inspiring, creative and trusted industry partner that we aspire to be.

Finally, I’d like to wish each of you a wonderful festive period and happy new year.  Look forward to catching up, and working together in what promises to be another interesting year in 2024!